So, as some of you know, I transitioned from OLY lifting to yoga when I injured my back a few years ago. After 3 or so years of consistent yoga practice (6 days a week plus private lessons in Iyengar and Ashtanga) I finally found my way back to the squat rack. Im about 6 months back into lifting and trying to maintain my yoga practice (so far, 3 days lifting and 2-3 days yoga). I have found that my hips (and shoulders.. but I will post something about those later) are what have tightened up the quickest and as such I have leaned on a few of my favorite poses to remedy this issue. I hope to share these with any who have ailing hips (or maybe aren't aware how tight their hips are)... so here are a few of my favorites
1. Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining bound triangle pose)... This one uses some props, mainly the bolster and a strap. It is good to put blocks underneath the knees for support until more flexibility is gained. You can progress to putting weight on each knee to open the hips more (with bean bags or books or something-- be creative), once you find you are comfortable, so that the legs end up flat on the floor. I stay in this pose for 2-20 minutes with steady deep breathing and focusing the mind on outwardly rotating the femur. If you are using a strap set the buckle up so that you can tighten it while you are reclined (ie above the foot). Try to relax into the pose and continually release the tightness in the hips. Come out of this pose by releasing the strap and rolling toward the right side until the right side of your body is on the floor. Stand up with care.
2. Eka Pada Rajakapotosana (one legged king pigeon pose).
A variation: you can put the back leg against the wall for more support, with knee at where wall meets floor. Try to bring yourself vertical then isolate the hip flexor and psoas by extending the isolated hip forward. Breathe.
3. Not a 'yoga pose', but quite awesome with a partner. The Thomas Stretch:
Follow all with foam rolling, of course.
I hope this proves beneficial for some of you!